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Auburn Recruiting is also “Auburn Fast”

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                   Auburn’s latest recruit, 4-star Line backer Richard McBryde. (photo:Dennis Victory,al.com)

The middle of the dog days of summer means one thing in the south – college football is almost here. The off season is almost over and in just a few days Auburn will begin preseason training camp.

While the coaching staff has to get the Tigers prepared to defend their SEC Championship, another challenge always lies underneath the surface no matter what time of year it may be. Of course we’re talking about recruiting, the life blood of the sport.

Last year Auburn not only had unexpected success in reaching the BCS Championship game, the Tigers also had success in putting together a star studded Top Ten recruiting class.

In fact 247Sports Composite recruiting rankings (which equally weigh the ratings of all the major recruiting services) had the Tigers 2014 class ranked at No.6 in the nation. Auburn surprised many when they signed four of the top seven players in the state of Alabama and came close to going five out of seven.

Will Auburn be able to match that success in 2015?

This time last year Auburn had 13 verbal commits. The Tigers are ahead of schedule this year with nineteen having already committed. Just this past week, three top recruits committed to Auburn including Wide Receiver Nate Craig. Rivals rates him the No.1 overall prospect in the nation for the 2016 class.

While his commitment doesn’t make an immediate impact on this years rankings it could serve to influence some other top players to join the Tigers. The 6’3″ receiver is a consensus 5-star prospect out of Tampa Catholic. He chose the Tigers over offers from Alabama and Ohio State.

Also committing this week for the 2015 class was 3-star Defensive Back Chris Westry from Orange Beach, Fla. along with 4-star Inside-Line backer, Richard McBryde from Charles Henderson. McBryde chose Auburn over Alabama and Westry picked the Tigers over his in state school, Florida.

Not surprisingly, both players said they were swayed by the family atmosphere they felt on The Plains. McBryde was quoted as saying, “Every time I go to Auburn, they show me love.” He became Auburn’s 19th commitment, pushing the Tigers’ 2015 class in to fifth place nationally.

It seems that “Auburn Fast” applies to more than just the pace of the game. National signing day is still six months off and the Tigers do not have many spots left. However, there are still some top recruits left out there that Auburn is interested in signing.

To name just a few:

 – DT Daron Payne: A 5-star tackle from Birmingham says he grew up an Auburn fan and has the Tigers, in his top four along with Alabama, Mississippi State and Texas.
– OT Martez Ivey: The 5-star Lineman from Florida is being heavily recruited by Auburn and Florida. He grew up a Gators fan but his best friend is current Auburn commit and team mate Fullback, Chandler Cox.
– DT Trent Thompson: The No. 1 overall prospect in the country from Westover High in Albany, Ga. has listed Georgia and Auburn as one and two on his list.
– LB Jefferey Holland: 4-star receiver and linebacker from Jacksonville, Florida. Holland has wavered this summer between Auburn, Florida and UCLA. It may prove difficult to pull him away from his in state school.

Recruiting is something that is a 365 day endeavor for a winning program. The Tigers will be dueling the rest of the SEC the next few months not only on the field but on the recruiting trail as well. No fewer than seven SEC teams are presently ranked in the top 10 with Auburn at No.5.

It’s a battle every week. Successful programs can’t afford to take their time lining up new talent. So far though, Gus and crew are proving that they recruit just like they coach … Auburn Fast.

List of 2015 Auburn commitments after the jump:

– ATH Jason Smith, 4-star (6-1/180) Gulf Coast C.C., Perkinston, MS
– QB Tyler Queen, 4-star (6-2/229) North Cobb, Kennesaw, GA 
– CB Tony Bridges, 4-star (6-2/185) Gulf Coast C.C., Perkinston, MS
– LB Elijah Sullivan, 3-star (6-1/215) Tucker, GA
– LB Montavious Atkinson, 4-star (6-2/205) Langston Hughes, Fairburn, GA
– RB Kerryon Johnson, 4-star (6-0/200) Madison Academy, Madison, AL
– OL Bailey Sharp, 3-star (6-5/280) Sprayberry, Marietta, GA
– S Ben Edwards, 4-star (6-0/196) Trinity Christian Academy, Jacksonville, FL
– OL Marquel Harrell, 3-star (6-3/295) Creekside, Fairburn, GA
– RB D’Anfernee McGriff, 4-star (6-1/230) Leon, Tallahassee, FL
– OL Kaleb Kim, 4-star (6-4/280) Mill Creek, Hoschton, GA
– DB Jordan Colbert, 4-star (6-2/205) Griffin, GA
– LB Darrell Williams, 4-star (6-3/227) Hoover, AL
– RB Jovon Robinson, 5-star (6-0/220) Georgia Military College, Milledgeville, GA
– FB Chandler Cox, 4-star (6-2/220) Apopka, FL
– OL Tyler Carr, 4-star (6-5/310) Southside-Gadsden, Gadsden, AL
– TE Jalen Harris, 3-star (6-5/238) St. James, Montgomery, AL
– DB Chris Westry, 3-star (6-4/180) Oakleaf, Oakleaf Park, FL
– LB Richard McBryde, 4-star (6-2/210) Charles Henderson, Troy, AL

13 Comments

  1. wde1988 wde1988 says:

    Auburn’s success is due to the 2nd staff like bama’s. But in the SEC parity is the norm. Don’t know if all SEC schools have gone too this coaching structure but they have picked up their game. Right now we are in a tough fight for dominance.

    Top SEC recruiting:

    bama (1)
    South Carolina (3)
    TA&M (4)
    AU (5)
    Tennessee (7)
    MSU (8)
    UGA (10)

    That’s amazing.

    Let’s hope we can sustain it.

    WDE

  2. KoolBell KoolBell says:

    Not to be picky or anything. You stated “While his signing doesn’t make an immediate impact on this years rankings…”

    No recruit has actually signed a letter of intent to play for any school at this juncture. They are not allowed to, until the first day of the signing period. Which in the case of young Mr. Craig (no relation to Coach Craig) will be in 2016.

    We usually celebrate that first day of the signing period as National Signing Day.

    Sorry if this comes off sounding like a jerk, it’s not meant to in any way, shape, or form.

    My belief is that this staff, as long as it can stay together, can and will recruit the very best to Auburn. Enjoyed the read this morning.

    WAR EAGLE!

    • AubTigerman AubTigerman says:

      Thanks for the catch KB. I appreciate all the help I can get. You know how it is putting together a post. You proofread that sucker a dozen times and still miss things. I’ve made the edit on that line from “signing” to “commitment.” BTW I could never think of you as a nick picker and certainly not a “jerk.” If there is a gentleman on the boards, his name is KoolBell.

      • uglyjoe says:

        I’m not trying to beat that horse, but we all know that any commitment is worth the paper it’s written on…..it should be called something else, because when it’s broken, which happens a lot, it sure wasn’t a “commitment”. Sorry, just my pet peeve; love to you all.

        • AubTigerman AubTigerman says:

          Not a dead horse at all Joe. Your right – nothing is final till the letters of intent are signed. I guess it’s sort of like being engaged, doesn’t really mean anything till the I do’s are said and the marriage license is signed.

  3. AUglenn says:

    Auburn has 19 commitments so far but how many will Auburn be able to sign? How many spots are left? Also does anyone know where Stephen Davis, Jr. is right now with his commitment? seems like i read last spring he was leaning toward Auburn but backed off. Is that still the case or has he committed somewhere else?

    • AubTigerman AubTigerman says:

      You can expect Gus to bring in 24-25. That would leave 5 -6 spots available. However, we all know that recruiting is not an exact science. As Yogi Berra used to say, “It ain’t over till it’s over.” Some recruits don’t hold to their original commitment and things change. Auburn will probably lose one or two and pick up (flip) one or two before NSD next February.

      As for Stephen Davis,Jr. he did say earlier that he was almost ready to pull the trigger but since he has two more years of high school he decided to take some other visits. I know that South Carolina is recruiting him hard, hopefully after he attended last year’s Iron Bowl he’ll see there’s just no place like Jordan-Hare on a Saturday night.

    • KoolBell KoolBell says:

      Current thinking is that Shon Coleman wins the Left Tackle spot. He has a good year, and leaves for the NFL. He is the oldest Sophomore on the team. Chizik and C. signed him in the 2010 class. His fight w/ Cancer and the redshirts have led to him being a Soph. this season.

      If Coleman leaves there is one spot. Might be a couple more if we can pull the whole playoff thing into a Championship.

  4. sparkey sparkey says:

    From what I’ve heard, Stephen Davis Jr. is on commitment watch and has another visit scheduled to Auburn soon. The fact that Nate Craig has already committed and Stephen Davis Jr. might go ahead and commit, we’re looking at an incredible class coming in 2016 and that’s with a top 5 maybe top 3 or even 2 class of 2015.

    One thing that isn’t listed in the ranking, how many of those players actually make it to their school. Auburn has been damn near perfect on getting the new kids in that sign on with Auburn. For that matter, look at how well just about all of our highly graded recruits are developing. Our number 5 class is worth more than most top five classes. That says a great deal about our scouting and development and mentoring aspects of our coaching staff.

    As long as Gus is here, I think Auburn will be a top ten program at least year in and year out from what I’ve seen. I may be off here, but this is one of those times where Ole Sparkey is onto something.